January 24, 2017

barbican conservatory

If you read my last post on my newly introduced spending ban, you'll know by now that I'm on a tight budget and after searching around for free things to do in the London, I opted for the promise of rooms full of succulents at Barbican Conservatory. It was a truly wet and miserable afternoon, which suited the grungy grey tones of Barbican perfectly, and after a wander round the estate I now have my eye on a handful of apartments that have all become property goals. 


Barbican conservatory is open every Sunday, and once you've found your way through the jungle of plants, there's plenty still left to do in the centre itself. If you're under 25, there's the option of signing up to young barbican for discounted access into exhibitions and films.

January 20, 2017

try out deliveroo or uber eats this weekend

Whilst staying in London last weekend, I finally got round to trying out Deliveroo for the first time. As my usual home is in rural Norfolk, there's no such luxury of being able to pick from a mass of restaurants to be delivered in lightening speed. 

I'm a big fan of how the stigma of takeaways always being calorie laden and greasy has now been altered with thanks to both Deliveroo and Uber Eats having healthy and nutritious options, my current favourite place to order from is Leon as I just can't get enough of their halloumi wrap. A few of my Islington based faves are Homeburger (you must try their peanut butter and jam pie scraper), Wenlock and Essex (sourdough pizzas, score!) and Tortilla. 

Deliveroo cover most cities in the UK, whereas Uber Eats deliver to major cities across the world. Depending on where you're at, Uber Eats seem to have around double the choice of places to order from than Deliveroo, so I'd definitely recommend giving them a go too. I tend to switch between apps depending on what I fancy at the time. 

DELIVEROO: £5 off your first order (or just sign up with a new account for each order) using the code: jessicart 

UBER EATS: £5 off your first and second orders using the code: thebeautyseries

This isn't a sponsored post but I receive a referral payment for everyone who orders from Deliveroo and who signs up to Uber Eats using my codes, kaching!

January 09, 2017

the 100 day challenge: dairy and spending

There's just something in the air of January that instills a craving for change and progression. Although posts like this come hand in hand with the potential of sounding cliché (new year, new me, ..vom) I see no harm in self-improvement and do an internal fist pump whenever I spot someone making moves at enhancing their lifestyle. 

As per usual, I've been over-indulgent in all ways imaginable over Christmas (and in fact, for all of December itself). I've whisked out my debit card whenever I lusted after the dress or pair of shoes that I'd usually turn down, and I've pigged out on endless amounts of crisps and dare I say it, white bread. All year round I'm a wholemeal girl, until December turns up and suddenly I sod all common sense. The same goes for all choices in general, I say "but it's Christmas!" over and over in my mind to rationalise all the ways I spoil myself, and bam I've piled on 5lbs and find myself delving into my forbidden overdraft. 

So here I am, a rather doughy looking and penniless version of my former self. I reached out for some advice on twitter for how to control an impulsive spending habit and Sophia got back to me with the 100 days challenge. My mind always works best with strict rules and guidelines, rather than having any risk of blurred lines and vague goals. I decided to not only use it for stopping to spend but also as a way of kickstarting healthy eating. I plan to write update posts with how I'm getting on every couple of weeks or so, hopefully a few of you will stay tuned and I'm not just writing away to an empty audience. 


- No impulsive/unnecessary purchases: You know the situation, you pop into Boots for a new razor and end up coming out with a glittery nail polish, a coffee face scrub, a new shade of lipstick and a contour palette. So long as I don't need it, (deodorant, shampoo, shower gel etc), for 100 days I will no longer be buying it. I'm quite happy to be forced to use up all of my old products before buying any new ones. This goes for no more late night Asos orders too. 


- Ban on all bottled drinks: A year or so ago, I completely phased out soft drinks from my diet. Instead, I now drink around two bottles of sparkling water per day, but would much rather opt for lemon infused water as it's much healthier and cuts down on plastic waste. 

- Not allowed to buy cheese, milk and butter to use at home: I've already been a vegetarian all of my life and have done endless research into dairy to have finally made the decision to slowly but surely cut it out of my life. I don't want to be too strict on myself to start off with, so if I'm stuck with options when I'm out and about, I won't be worrying too much but for at home I'm going to be as strict as possible. 

- No chinese takeaways: Luckily this one also counters my spending problems and will both free up some cash and shrink my waistline. I tend to indulge on weekly takeaways and instead want to reduce this to buying just one thai takeaway (not laden with msg as the chinese) per fortnight. 

(I had no idea what image to use for this post.. so thought I'd leave you with one of Milo gazing into the distance looking like the dog version of a wise old man)